NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — New Haven’s Ellis Robinson IV has worked his way to the top — and ESPN is taking note.
The 18-year-old has been named as ESPN’s no. 1 high school football recruit in the nation.
“When I saw that, I was pretty hype, proud of myself, of how much work I put in,” Robinson said. “Gotta keep working, I know that for sure.”
The five-star defensive back had 24 big time college officers. He picked national champions the Georgia Bulldogs.
“Felt more home for me,” he said. “My heart was at. My family’s heart was at.”
His mother, Nicole Robinson, agrees.
“He loves being around family, and Georgia gives that family feel,” she said. “It was a perfect mix.”
It was obvious from the first time he put on the pads that he was a natural. He didn’t have to look far for a role model — his father, Ellis Robinson III, played at Southern Connecticut State University and then overseas. His older brother won a state title at Hillhouse High School.
“Ever since I was little, me and my dad, we would go to the field, always playing with older dudes,” Robinson said, adding that he started when he was 5 years old.
His father saw his son’s potential early.
“I use to tell him, you’re not gonna like me, but you’ll thank me later,” Robinson III said.
Those lessons included getting comfortable being uncomfortable.
“Once you get to the top, it’s ok, OK, what can I do now to tap into another ceiling,” Robinson III said.
Even though he’s at the top, the work still continues. He looks to his NFL favorite, Jalen Ramsey, for inspiration. They’re both athletically gifted — with the size, speed and length.
“The speed he’s work at, he’s probably in the 1% in the country to accelerate, decelerate , linear speed, it’s really remarkable,” said Frank Quido, who owns Breakout Athlete.